Ida survives its Central American crossing

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:04 PM GMT on November 06, 2009

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Hurricane Ida rumbled ashore over eastern Nicaragua yesterday morning as a Category 1 hurricane with 75 mph winds--the first November Atlantic hurricane to make landfall in an El NiƱo year since 1925. Now just a tropical depression, Ida has crossed over into Honduras, dumping heavy rains of 6 - 10 inches along the coast of Nicaragua and northeast Honduras, according to satellite estimates. The rains have pretty much ended over Nicaragua, thanks to the collapse of Ida's heavy thunderstorm activity on the south side of the center. Thunderstorm activity is still strong to the north of the center, over coastal Honduras and the waters of the Western Caribbean. Satellite loops show that Ida still has a vigorous circulation, and with the center due to move offshore tonight, it is apparent that Ida will survive the crossing of Nicaragua and Honduras.


Figure 1. Tropical Storm Ida at 1 pm EST November 5, 2009. In this MODIS image captured seven hours after landfall, Ida was a tropical storm with 65 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

The forecast for Ida
Ida will dump another 1 - 2 inches of rain over northeastern Honduras today. The Cayman Islands, Belize, and the rest of the Honduras coast can expect occasional heavy rains of 1 - 4 inches over the next two days as spiral bands from Ida bring squally weather. Much heavier rains of 4 - 8 inches are likely to affect Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and Western Cuba beginning Saturday, as Ida heads north towards the Yucatan Channel. Higher rain amounts may occur if Ida intensifies more than forecast.


Figure 2. Total heat content of the ocean (the Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential, TCHP) for November 4, 2005 compared to November 4, 2009. TCHP values in excess of 80 - 90 kJ/cm^2 (yellow, orange, and red colors) are often associated with rapid intensification of hurricanes. This year has higher heat content in the Western Caribbean than the record-breaking Hurricane Season of 2005. The higher heat content this year is partially because we haven't had any tropical cyclone activity in the Western Caribbean, while 2005 had some record strong storms--particularly Hurricane Wilma--that churned up cold water from the depths. Image credit: NOAA/AOML.

Moderate wind shear of 15 - 20 knots and warm waters await await Ida when it emerges over the Western Caribbean tonight, and some modest strengthening is likely. It is a concern that Ida could reach Category 1 hurricane strength before it reaches the Yucatan, as the total heat content of the ocean in the Western Caribbean is very high this year (Figure 2). However, given Ida's current disorganized state and the presence of 15 - 20 knots of shear, the odds of the storm reaching hurricane strength before passing the Yucatan on Sunday night are probably low, less than 30%.

The current wind speed probabilities for Cozumel give the Mexican resort island a 26% chance of receiving tropical storm-force winds of 39 mph of higher, Sunday or Monday. I expect Ida will be a tropical storm with 45 - 65 mph winds as it passes Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and enters the Gulf of Mexico on Monday. Passage over the Yucatan or western Cuba may cause significant weakening. With the shear expected to increase to a high 20 - 30 knots once Ida reaches the Gulf of Mexico on Monday, and with cooler water temperatures there, landfall of Ida as a hurricane on the U.S. coast is unlikely. The long-term fate of Ida once it reaches the Gulf of Mexico is hard to guess at this point, with the models offering a wide range of solutions. While a landfall along the Gulf Coast of Florida is a good bet, the trough of low pressure pulling Ida to the north may speed eastwards fast enough to strand Ida in the Gulf, where it would be forced westwards or southwestwards away from Florida, eventually hitting Texas or Mexico, or simply dissipating in the Gulf due to high wind shear. I give Ida a 50% chance of eventually hitting the U.S. Gulf Coast.

I'll have an update Saturday morning, or this afternoon if there's some interesting development to report.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Clearwater1:

Oh ok.
Does anyone recall a storm that blew through Tampa Bay, sometime in the early part 1992 or 03, that was dubbed the No Name Storm. Came off the gulf, with out warning, during the middle of the night. Did lot's of flood damage.


See post #931
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Ida is almost at the next forecast point already
The 18z SHIPS analyzed shear at 12knots over the system.
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937. CUBWF
I think the Perfect Storm was March the 16, 1993. I was in Cuba at that time in the middle of nowhere to hide. Very, very scare situation.
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936. IKE
72 hour 18Z GFS....

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Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


Perfect storm occured the end of October-Early November 1991

Oh ok.
Does anyone recall a storm that blew through Tampa Bay, sometime in the early part 1992 or 03, that was dubbed the No Name Storm. Came off the gulf, with out warning, during the middle of the night. Did lot's of flood damage.
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Quoting kanc2001:
its weird to me that we are talking a potential hybrid type storm for the SE and I have the heat on at the house and have a frost advisory for tonight (NE SC Coast)

Welcome to the El Nino Storm Season of 2009-2010. I am sure we'll see PLENTY of very unusual weather over the USA during the next 6-9 months.
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


Perfect storm occured the end of October-Early November 1991


it was dubbed the perfect storm but the term is used to describe any weather pattern where systems merge or combine together to make noticeable weather conditions.
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Checking in from South Florida.....Going to be an interesting week with Ida.
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The Superstorm Was March 93

1993 Storm of the Century


Satellite image by NASA of the superstorm on March 13, 1993, at 10:01 UTC.
Storm type: Cyclonic blizzard, Nor'easter
Formed: March 11, 1993
Dissipated: March 15, 1993
Maximum
amount1: 60 inches (152.4 cm) - Mt. Le Conte, TN
Lowest
pressure: 960 mbar (hPa)
Lowest
temperature: -12 degrees
Damages: $6-10 billion (2005 USD)[1]
Fatalities: 300 total
Areas affected: Canada, North America, and Central America

1Maximum snowfall or ice accretion


The Storm of the Century, also known as the Superstorm, No-Name Hurricane[citation needed] , the White Hurricane, or the (Great) Blizzard of 1993, was a large cyclonic storm that occurred on March 12 March 13, 1993, on the East Coast of North America. It is unique for its intensity, massive size and wide-reaching effect. At its height the storm stretched from Canada to Central America, but its main impact was on the Eastern United States and Cuba. Areas as far south as central Alabama and Georgia received 6 to 8 inches (20 cm) of snow and areas such as Birmingham, Alabama, received up to 12 inches (30 cm) with isolated reports of 16 inches (41 cm). Even the Florida Panhandle reported up to 4 inches (10 cm)[2], with hurricane-force wind gusts and record low barometric pressures. Between Louisiana and Cuba, hurricane-force winds produced extreme storm surges in the Gulf of Mexico, which along with scattered tornadoes killed dozens of people.



But this set-up isnt going to be like that,not by a long shot.

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Quoting NRAamy:
if I just surround myself in a My Little Pony shower curtain, will that be sufficient?


I heard that works for weather student :)
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Quoting Clearwater1:
re post 918 The perfect storm. I remember, but correct me if I wrong. It was in april or may. Out of no where and with no warning from the weather service a flood causing storm pushed through Tampa Bay. I was there. Flooded me and thousands of others. Is this the "no named" storm of which you speak?


Perfect storm occured the end of October-Early November 1991.

Superstorm was in March 1993
In Box #2 and heading North... let the games begin :)

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AOI

AOI

Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26511
re post 918 The perfect storm. I remember, but correct me if I wrong. It was in april or may. Out of no where and with no warning from the weather service a flood causing storm pushed through Tampa Bay. I was there. Flooded me and thousands of others. Is this the "no named" storm of which you speak?
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I don't really understand why the NHC is so conservative in terms of strength with Ida

Ida is a system that steadily intensified over an area of low TCHP to become a hurricane, she maintained great structure while being overland for over 24 hours

Now she is just back over the water and already showing signs of intensification over the one area in the entire Atlantic Basin that has the greatest potential for powerful hurricanes; and yet the NHC puts stock into moderate wind shear on 1 or 2 models? And not even all the shear models agree.

I guess I just don't get it
Quoting HurricaneHunterGal:
Weather456-
Could you explain your "Perfect Storm"? I heard about the posting this morning from another user and I am very interested in hearing (reading) it myself from you :-) Thanks!


some people describe a perfect storm as the coming together of several systems, most often of different types to make one system that is usually a noticeable weather maker. You have Ida, 96E and the expected gale system converging over the CGOM. This morning model runs showed gale conditions developing over the GOM region mid-next week.

Here's a nice story from accuweather

Two systems of tropical origin are being watched for impact in the Gulf of Mexico this weekend and beyond. One or both systems will kick up winds, waves and rain in the region that potentially can disrupt commerce and lead to damaging flooding. The extent of these problems will depend on the strength and speed of Ida heading for the eastern Gulf and an unnamed system in the western Gulf.

Look at the Gulf of Mexico

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Quoting reedzone:


Look at this image.. See how it all comes together in a few days, a strange event that hasn't happened in 18 years..


WOW Ok I see now
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Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service New Orleans la
339 PM CST Friday Nov 6 2009


Short term...


A somewhat slower progression of the expected system for the
weekend into early next week has taken shape today. However...a
significant event is still expected to impact the forecast area.
The main change in thinking has been to slow down the onset of
rain from late Sunday afternoon to early Monday morning.
Otherwise...very little has changed in the current forecast. The
overall pattern will still be dominated by a strong ridge parked
over the southeast...a broad area of low pressure centered in the
southern Gulf of Mexico. This area of low pressure will slowly
drift to the north Saturday and Sunday...and begin to deepen a bit
as it moves to the north. A tight pressure gradient already in
place will strengthen even more heading into the weekend and early
next week...with strong easterly flow of 20 to 30 miles per hour expected
Monday into Tuesday. These persistent strong winds will allow
water to pile up on south and east facing shores this weekend into
early next week...with tides running a good 3 feet above normal
Sunday night into Monday. Another caveat is the introduction of
Tropical Storm Ida into the Gulf of Mexico. As the tropical system
moves into the Gulf...a swell train will develop and spread into
the Gulf waters. This enhanced wave action will only serve to
exacerbate the coastal flooding situation early next week.


Going beyond the wind and coastal flooding impacts...some locally
heavy rainfall will also be possible with the non-tropical low
expected to move into the region from the southwest Gulf of
Mexico. A deep plume of moisture will overspread the region Sunday
night into Monday...allowing for a broad swath of showers and
thunderstorms to develop across the entire County Warning Area. Overall...rainfall
totals of 2 to 3 inches cannot be ruled out Sunday night through
Tuesday. Some locally heavier amounts will be possible.
Fortunately...the ground has been able to dry out a bit due to the
recent stretch of dry weather...so river flooding issues are not
expected. The other impact will be warmer temperatures moving back
into the area. Daytime highs will remain near normal due to the
rainfall and cloud cover. However...overnight lows will be
several degrees above normal Saturday night into Sunday night as
moisture feeds into the region.

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# 904

Thanks Senior Chief.
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its weird to me that we are talking a potential hybrid type storm for the SE and I have the heat on at the house and have a frost advisory for tonight (NE SC Coast)
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Quoting reedzone:


Look at this image.. See how it all comes together in a few days, a strange event that hasn't happened in 18 years..

Will you explain your thinking. What will happen with this perfect storm of which you speack. Details please.
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Quoting reedzone:


Look at this image.. See how it all comes together in a few days, a strange event that hasn't happened in 18 years..

16 years* The superstorm was in 1993
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3619
Quoting NRAamy:


I live in Southern Calif...should I board up my windows?


Yes, but for different reasons of course.
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Quoting HurricaneHunterGal:
Weather456-
Could you explain your "Perfect Storm"? I heard about the posting this morning from another user and I am very interested in hearing (reading) it myself from you :-) Thanks!


Look at this image.. See how it all comes together in a few days, a strange event that hasn't happened in 18 years..

Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7365
Quoting Drakoen:


Yes the HWRF did do well surprisingly. It looks like the NHC track is in closed agreement with the UKMET and the HWRF with the GFDL further south.


I think the performance of BAMD can be accredited to the surprising dept of the system. I do not think the NHC at first thought Ida would become a hurricane. I was looking at the GFDL more than the HWRF so while it did well I can't really speak for it.
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Quoting CaneWarning:


I think Tampa still needs the rain. St Pete had a wet summer for some reason while Tampa seemed to miss out.
Stronger easterlies this year pinned the seabreeze up against the coast every day. Also resulted in the east coast of the state getting much less rainfall than normal.
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3619
Quoting StormChaser81:


You went through a cat 4, so read up on info more and digest that, and i live in st. petersburg and we are 1 inch above on rain totals.


I think Tampa still needs the rain. St Pete had a wet summer for some reason while Tampa seemed to miss out.
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Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
I'd say it may rain in Florida at some point based on that satellite loop ;)
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Weather456-
Could you explain your "Perfect Storm"? I heard about the posting this morning from another user and I am very interested in hearing (reading) it myself from you :-) Thanks!
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The AVN shows that Cluster of Boomers continues to Blossom in that right front Quad too.



Seems the Coc has nestled in nicely and the Low Level Vortex is poised to take advantage this afternoon and tonight.
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Quoting portcharlotte:


No problem my friend ...we are in a severe drought here and this would save many resisents from paying top dollar for new wells (mmany of us have well systems). WWE NEED THE RAIN AND A NORMAL HAPPENING LIKE A TROPICAL STORM IS WHAT BALANCES OUR RAIN TOTALS HERE. SO IN OTHER WORDS A $1200 well bill would be relieved by a 60 or 70 mph storm or even a Cat1. We went through a cat5 here so anything less is just a breeze. Digest that


You went through a cat 4, so read up on info more and digest that, and i live in st. petersburg and we are 1 inch above on rain totals.
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Quoting StormW:
STATISTICAL



DYNAMIC


Have these models or the new NHC update changed your mind at all? Your last update mentioned the Big Bend area.
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Ida is moving north. The wrapping of convection around the SW side is making it look like the center is propelled NNE.
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Quoting Weather456:
Other than humans, the HWRF and BAMD were the two models that did well with Ida's track over the past 3 days.


Yes the HWRF did do well surprisingly. It looks like the NHC track is in closed agreement with the UKMET and the HWRF with the GFDL further south.
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BAMD has done well with IDa,..and will be cool to see how it pans out thru Tuesday.
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IDA should of alre4ady started moving NNW or NW already, and she is still moving N. Could be a sign of a more southern (than Tampa) landfall. Be back in a bit.
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Ida's cloud canopy is larger than when it made landfall.
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Looks just about due north to me, already at 16.0N

I have always heard that sometimes the circulation will get sucked up into convection on systems like this, and I feel that is what has happened
Quoting reedzone:
Weather456,
Do you see a Perfect Storm setting up here? Or is it just me..


I posted it this morning, yea.
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897. IKE
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This looks serious to me..

Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7365
Other than humans, the HWRF and BAMD were the two models that did well with Ida's track over the past 3 days.
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Quoting Drakoen:


Agree
I was just looking at IR shortwave loop(don't know how to post it) but looks like coc is moving NE imo. Please look at it and tell me what you see. Anyone else's opinion is appreciated also.
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IDA Floater - RGB Color Infrared Loop

"TFP's" available
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Quoting dearmas:


Yeah our summer storms here in Tampa are just as crazy as a TS


Except those don't push a wall of water ahead of them. It is not wind damage that you should fear, it is surge. Tampa is the motherlode of flooding if a decent storm gets in there...or even close enough to push surge into the bay.
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The local news at 5 PM should be interesting here in Tampa...
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Weather456,
Do you see a Perfect Storm setting up here? Or is it just me..
Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7365

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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